Million Dollar Listing’s Luis D Ortiz opens up about his depression & suicidal thoughts


Former Million Dollar Listing: New York star, Luis D. Ortiz, wrote that the recent, highly publicized suicides of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain inspired him to disclose his own experiences with depression and suicidal thoughts. Luis, who left Puerto Rico for the US with his twin brother at the age of 16, seemingly has “it all” being handsome, charismatic, wealthy and very successful. Much like Kate and Anthony, it’s hard for someone who does not suffer from depression to see what could possibly be so wrong with their dynamic lives. Luis described some very raw emotional thoughts that are rarely voiced. Suicide rates have risen dramatically in the US over the past 20 years, and so I have posted his letter in its entirety. It’s long but each person I know whose read it has taken something different from it and it’s hard to edit. Please note, this is all his language as he posted it:

I have been wanting to share this for some time now but have been very reluctant to do so for the very same reasons most of us choose to keep our truths in the dark. However, ever since Kate and Bourdain committed suicide I have been feeling the strong need and responsibility of sharing my truth with the hopes of a positive change.

For the past year I have been struggling with depression and during the last three months all I can think of — day and night — is putting an end to it all. What makes sense Intellectually doesn’t seem to internalize which makes understanding how selfish this would be for the people that love me seem almost impossible to see. In fact, I argue that it is selfish of them to let me live in a place I have convinced myself I no longer want to be a part of. It’s a very stupid, ignorant and blind argument but once you have broken yourself down to the extent of no longer believing in any of your abilities and the value you bring to yourself, the people closest to you and the world you live in it’s extremely difficult to see it that way.

Thanks to the genuine love and care of a few good friends and family who have constantly fought and continue to fight hard to engrave me in the perspectives they know I have the ability to understand in order to come back to the old full-of-light self I truly loved, respected and admired and they will never give up on, I am still here. I am still here and with the desire of slowly eradicating this current bullshit (definitely temporary) mindset of mine and start creating something extraordinary as a result.

My point; this shit is real and it’s happening to so many people. Regardless of who they are and what they have or haven’t accomplished. We constantly feel the need of showing that everything is ok when it really isn’t and that needs to stop. Our present social media platforms are amazing for creating, for global conversations, for education, for inspiration and for many other great things but not if they’re used without the truth. I’m not sure who and when was it established that sharing and reaching out when we are feeling ourselves is not a cool thing to do when it is par of who we are. It’s like having a headache, which we are ashamed of letting everyone know about. Our internal battle makes us stronger, yes. But we need to win them first. And sometimes, most times, we can’t win them on our own.

With that said, don’t be afraid of your truth. Be proud of it. Share it if you believe will help you understand it better. It’s the only way you will genuinely evolve. And for those of you with friends or close ones who you see are not being themselves, do not abandon them. Remind them of who they are. Remind them that you’re there for them. Remind them that you love them. They don’t need to be at their lowest to be positively affected by it. Some many amazing and incredibly valuable lives are being lost to nonsense ideas created by themselves. Let’s keep the ones we have alive. No misery is bigger or smaller. They are all relative created as a result of reactions we have yet to learn and control. Let’s make it cool and sexy to create forward while sharing our truth along the way. Let’s learn to love everyone’s unique truth and perhaps that will elevate our levels of compassion and empathy which will better us as people and our world. We are all amazing. Don’t forget that.

With love, Luis ❤️

When CB read this, the biggest take-away for her was how Luis listed his reasoning, a perspective she’d not heard before. When my hisband read it, he was surprised by the idea of finding those trying to keep you alive in a world you don’t want to be selfish. A girlfriend texted me after she’d read it, “Jesus, is this why you go quiet?” I appreciated the part about truth in social media. I’d include any electronic communication: email, text, Skype, etc. because as long as no one sees my face or hears my voice, I can present whatever emotion I need to keep them away.

However, the most important part for me is the part about reaching out to those who suffer. This is such a longer discussion than this space allows. Although Luis and my truths are not identical (none are), there’s one thing I’d like to add: if someone you love suffers from depression and you are committed to their mental health, have the discussion with them when they are not in a depressed cycle. Come up with a plan, establish tells or signs – whatever creates a lifeline that can be thrown when the person dips. Hit me up on Twitter if you want to talk more: @HecateAtCB

Also, always keep these handy, whether for you or anyone that needs it: National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text “help” to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or


A post shared by Luis D. Ortiz (@luisdortiz) on




Photo credit: WENN photos and Instagram

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

26 Responses to “Million Dollar Listing’s Luis D Ortiz opens up about his depression & suicidal thoughts”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Lara says:

    At this moment in time I’m very worried about my younger sister who does suffer from mental health issues. I’ve finally made her go and see a doctor but it took so long because she was ashamed and felt that it made her look weak. She is very much of the generation who puts all of the good times on social media. She see’s this and feels like she’s missing out or everyone is fine but her. I said to her that if you looked at her social media someone could feel the same way. Don’t be fooled by what people put up because they edit their lives to look the best they can be.

    • M says:

      Lara: this issue started for me in the early 2000’s only with “away” messages on AOL. I felt what you are describing- isolated, left out, why don’t I have more friends? On top of that, I lived in NY where you were expected to party. Feel bad for these poor souls of today’s generation.

  2. Louise177 says:

    I watch the show and it’s not surprising Luis suffers from depression. He’s very emotional and throughout the seasons he’s been saying how unhappy he was in life. A couple of years ago he moved to Paris on a whim without ever visiting hoping he would be happy. Last season he had an emotional breakdown about how miserable he was. Hopefully therapy will help.

    • AG-UK says:

      @Louise177 you took the words right out of my mouth I love that show and him too but yes very emotional. I remember him moving to Paris too my first thought as I am too practical how is he going to live there did he get a job (no he hadn’t) no visa?? I do like him in the show but hopefully therapy will help him.

      • Mo' Comments Mo' Problems says:

        I enjoy watching that show too and was wondering how he was logistically going to pull it off living overseas (and visa, how???). He could invest in things or start a business–in some countries that’s a way to apply for whatever visas to stay. @Louise177 and @AG-UK, I also think that he was looking for happiness in things or places he thought would provide it. Totally understand the cluster of things in NYC and that he needed to get out, but maybe taking breathers and breaks would be good. I also wonder if he felt like he was falling short of his success in NYC and wanted to live up to people’s expectations of him and this grandeur idea of a drastic/dramatic move.

  3. Shelley says:

    So true! The facade presented to the outside world is the most terrifying part… You just never know what goes on in the mind. Sadly, the depressive feelings always return.

  4. MI6 says:

    “Our present social media platforms are amazing for creating, for global conversations, for education, for inspiration and for many other great things but not if they’re used without the truth. ”
    This is it. Right. Here.
    Social media isolates more than it brings together. It allows bullying, and fosters a sense of inadequacy and often, abandonment.
    This doesn’t help anyone, let alone those who are suffering.
    Thank you for this thoughtful piece, and to Luis for his brave words.

    • ChillyWilly says:

      I agree MI6.I left Facebook 5 years ago for these reasons. Instagram is even worse IMO.

      • MI6 says:

        Yes, Chilly. Good for you. I’m not on sm at all for these exact reasons. It is rarely honest or real. And those who post the most have more to hide IMO.
        And no one is immune. All the money, stature, looks and/or success in the world do not insulate anyone from depression and loneliness.

      • ChillyWilly says:

        I joined Facebook thinking it would be a way to keep in touch and connect with people. I quickly found out that there was very little connecting and a whole lot of people showing their asses. I am a grown up and it was damaging to my mental health. I simply can’t imagine what it’s like for kids and teens.

      • MI6 says:

        I can’t either. Bullying 24/7? These kids need all the support, love and acceptance we can give them.
        And I think everyone should have to blow before going on FB. So much bad stuff happens when people post drunk/impaired.

  5. Kiki says:

    I will say this. Clinical Depression is not easy to get over. I should know, I am avid survivor of that. Being sad and pretending to be happy for everyone is difficult to combine. It took me ten years to get over the hurt and loneliness that I have been through. Don’t get me wrong, I thought the only way to get out of my depression was to end my life but I have realized that I was too strong for that, therefore I have 5 nervous breakdowns and 2 panic attacks. Once again, this was easy to recover however it took me ten years to survive depression. My advice for anyone going through what I have went through, is to seek help. I went to counselling hotline which led to a therapist. Seek the love and support of your family. Don’t take it upon yourself and remember your life matters.

  6. ChillyWilly says:

    Thanks for this post Hecate. This is what struck me the most in his letter:
    “And for those of you with friends or close ones who you see are not being themselves, do not abandon them. Remind them of who they are. Remind them that you’re there for them. Remind them that you love them. ”
    I have been crippled with depression, anxiety and mild agoraphobia since the death of my brother 9 years ago. I have always had these issues but they were somewhat manageable. When my brother died, I just lost it and still haven’t been able to fully recover. I stopped being able to socialize and as a result lost EVERY SINGLE ONE OF MY FRIENDS. For the first time in my life I have no friends. When I could no longer leave the housw they all left me. The only reason I don’t end my life is my mother. I love her so much and I could never put her through the pain she felt losing my brother. I do wonder what will happen to me when she dies.

    • JEM says:

      Oh, Chillywilly, I’m so sorry for your loss and for your pain. It sounds like you are really struggling. Sending hugs from a stranger across the Internet.

    • NeoCleo says:

      Hi Chillywilly:

      I completely understand what you are going through. Although my own depression is endemic and not from a specific cause as is yours, I too have lost many friends during my down cycles. It is very difficult to cultivate and maintain friendships when you suffer from depression. It’s hard enough, as we age, to make new friends under optimal circumstances. We (the depressed) tend to self-isolate ourselves which just exacerbates the situation. I find that if I can manage to get myself out of the house it helps me to break the cycle.

      I hope you have good professional support. And please accept my condolences on losing your brother. Losing loved ones is a pain that never goes away, we just have to learn to live with it.

    • Aud says:

      I’m so sorry for your loss, Chilly. We really find out who our friends are when things get tough, and it’s horrible to discover that you had no true friends at all. I lost every one of my friends when I came out to them, so I can relate.

      Are you an animal lover? When I’m having an especially difficult time my dogs are what keep me going. They need me and I need them.


  7. I’m often disappointed by the lack of comments on these kind of posts. I can’t understand why no one likes to talk about mental health. We all suffer from it one way or another, so why not talk about it? People are really good at pretending and that’s the main problem. Everyone gets caught up in the roles they choose to play. Well, some of us are tired of acting. Your family and closest friends can sometimes be the fakest. It’s not their fault, it’s all they know. What do you think makes most people depressed? A large part is not understanding how you’re supposed to be everything but what you are, or a better version at least. The world is a sad place with beauty in it. Beware of the wolf in sheeps clothing. Reality is not an easy pill to swallow! Terrible things are endlessly happening, people can be so self absorbed, physically and mentally draining! What happened to real conversation? The kind where i say something, then you say something, and we listen, you know, that kind. So life can make you sad, you feel like a failure, you feel pain and confusion, you feel helpless to help yourself and others, which leads to anger. All of these traits make you an outcast real quick! It’s pretty sad that you have to be thankful for genuine interactions that leave you full instead of depleted. We our humans, we our meant to connect! This disconnection to everyone and life etc is making us all sick. Not being able to talk about the elaphant in the room is a joke! Why do you think depressed people isolate themselves? To self preserve. Cuz I don’t know about you, but this thing we call life is nuts! And if i can’t be myself, be genuine, connect, tell the truth, i have no time for it. But because you’re constantly asked and told what’s wrong or something is wrong, you start to attack yourself and blame yourself!! Being humble and empathic can really do a Disservice to yourself. So my advice is be the bad ass you really are, be the odd man out and let your freak flag fly! Stop beating yourself up and let it all go! Seek help on your time and don’t look for anyone to save you, because only you can save yourself. And you can do that by being a leader and finding your own way of making this world a better place. No matter how small you can make a difference, and that is the internal peace you seek. I’ve had depression since childhood, and at 29 I’m finally proud to say that! I’m proud to feel it all! I’m fully alive and fully aware! What a beautiful twisted gift!

    • NeoCleo says:

      Most people are afraid to admit to depression. It makes us vulnerable to others and self-protection is a very strong reflexive reaction. I know I hesitate bringing up my own depression when it’s not the relative anonymity of the net. I rarely talk about my depression with my family. Most of them have the “just shake it off” mentality that infuriates me.

    • Aud says:

      I think it’s partly because the help available can be scary? I’m an introvert and have difficulty opening up to even those closest to me. The idea of opening up to a therapist causes severe anxiety. That may sound melodramatic, but I’m completely serious. I find myself retreating like a turtle in its shell, waiting for the worst to pass.

      • No it is super weird and scary to talk to a stranger! I go through the same thing. But, you get to a point where you can’t keep doing the same thing, and you realize it’s worth it to try. I’m so tired of being sick and tired! I’m just exhausted by depression and don’t want it to hold me back from fully living. And those who don’t have depression can’t understand. Why should we hide? But i do. I don’t want to worry loved ones. It sucks

  8. SJhere says:

    For me, I have decided to limit my time on the computer, I get my chores done, order on Amazon, check the weather and now 10 minutes a day puttering on the Internet.
    I actually set my oven timer and then put my laptop on a shelf in the closet.
    Facebook and other social sites generally do my mental health no good, too phony.
    Wasting my time mostly.

    My family and close friends realize if they need to reach me, call me.

    If I have any advice…it would be to show more kindness in everyday life, everyday.
    Take care everybody, naps are always, always underrated, IMO.

  9. Asiyah says:

    Last night was pretty rough for me. Everything that’s happening with the immigrants and the family separations here in the USA, the brutal killing of 15-year-old Lesandro Guzman-Feliz here in the Bronx, and my separation from my husband as I await the decision about my Australian visa has me so depressed. All I want to do is shut down the computer for a few days and breathe. That won’t solve my visa issue or any issues for that matter but it can help with the sensory overload. I can’t seem to get the images of these children and of Lesandro as he was being dragged to his death out of my mind. This world is truly depressing.

  10. Laura says:

    His words broke my heart and were eerily familar to me as I have struggled with depression all of my life. I have been suicidal twice. It has taken a lot of time and therapy for me to finally find peace. My life is far from perfect and I stay off of social media because it made me feel badly about myself, but I get up in the morning and (most days) feel happy and grateful for all that is good in my life. I still have dark days but I know how to get myself through them without feeling that I need to end things or that life will never get better.

    My heart goes out to everyone who struggles in life, whether it is with depression, loneliness, inferiority, etc. You matter and are loved ❤

  11. moo says:

    My colleague died by suicide a couple of weeks ago. None of us knew she was suffering. She was a brilliant artist in addition to being an educated professional. Our profession has a high suicide rate. Every so often I get into a deep funk where I think of ending it all. I can’t and won’t do that to my mother, but I do wish my life would just be over and sometimes am plagued by this. Can’t talk to anyone when I feel this way as I’d either “get in trouble” just for thinking about it and/or overly burden the person I tell. So we soldier on and every year a few of us don’t make it and end up with obituaries describing unexpected death at home. I am lucky that I have found some ways to find light at the end of the tunnel, but I still have periods where it’s obscured by thick fog and black sky.

  12. Miss M says:

    Hecate, Thank you for writing this post.
    Thank you all for speaking out about your our your loved one struggles. My heart and support go out to each one of you. Love, Miss M